The new album from Boston hip-hop mainstay Akrobatik and follow-up to 2003's Balance, Absolute Value takes the listener on a journey through his diverse range, and he does not go at it alone. An impressive list of guest artists and producers that accompany Ak on Absolute Value include hip-hop legends, some of today's most powerful contemporary names, and members of the underground elite. It all comes off as if Akrobatik is conducting an orchestra of some of the most talented and respected artists in the game. After years of regional rap stardom and underground acclaim, Ak penetrated Hip-Hop's greater critical consciousness as one-third of The Perceptionists with Mr. Lif and DJ Fakts One. Their 2005 Def Jux release, "Black Dialogue," pitched some of music's most resounding criticisms of bandwagon pop culture and the Bush regime, and became the only indie rap project to register on Rolling Stone's Top 50 Records of the Year list. With AV, Akro deals with issues both personal and socio-political, but never strays too far from his fist-pumping, party-inducing formula for bangers. The effects of life on the road, enlightening misguided youth, perseverance through the toughest of times, and the continuing struggle of Black America are among the issues Akro tackles on AV. And with production from the likes of J-Dilla, Illmind, Beatminerz, 9th Wonder, Hezekiah, J-Zone, and more, Akro has the perfect backdrops to get his points across while keeping the funk totally intact. The list of artists lending their vocal talents to Absolute Value is mind-boggling. Talib Kweli, Chuck D. of Public Enemy, Mr. Lif, Bumpy Knuckles, and Little Brother headline a guest list that would leave any true hip-hop fan brimming with excitement.